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The teams, which focused on issues of end-of-life care, access to mental health services, community health improvement and the rising use of e-cigarette use by youth, left with new skills and knowledge on human-centered design, a process that is centered on the needs and motivations of the people most affected by the solutions. This knowledge will help each team as they work on developing creative problem-solving solutions in the months ahead. Each team will be guided by additional coaching from the Design Impact consultants.
The MetroWest Health Foundation announced the award of its first Think Big - Change Lives Grant to Daniel’s Table, a Framingham-based nonprofit organization that seeks to solve hunger in the town. The two-year $157,062 grant will enable Daniel’s Table to significantly ramp up its program to provide meals across Framingham.
The foundation kicked-off its Big - Change Lives initiative last fall. The initiative challenged local non-profit and municipal agencies to pitch their “big idea” on how to improve the health of the MetroWest region. Of the 27 organizations that responded, the foundation’s board of trustees chose to fund Daniel’s Table.
“The Board was struck by the leadership and dedication of Daniel’s Table’s co-founders David and Alicia Blais and their passion to work to alleviate hunger in Framingham. They have a strong social enterprise model that will help sustain this work beyond grant funding,” said Martin Cohen, President and CEO of the MetroWest Health Foundation.
The grant will fund expansion of Daniel’s Table meal deliveries in multiple South Framingham neighborhoods; expand access to emergency frozen meals prepared in their new commercial kitchen on Pearl Street in Framingham; add additional schools to the weekend meal bag program done in collaboration with the Framingham Public Schools; and improve communication between emergency food providers through an interactive calendar detailing community meal programs and food pantry hours.
“Three years ago, we had a crazy idea about ending hunger in Framingham. The grant will allow us to take a major leap toward realizing that goal. Having the MetroWest Health Foundation put its trust and invest money in Daniel's Table's vision is a testament to the work we have done and to shows their support for the work we continue to do. This grant will allow us to put the needed people and equipment in place as we prepare our organization for explosive growth. Together we can become the first city or town in the USA to end hunger, and through doing so, move other cities and towns toward creating their own programs,” said David Blais of Daniel’s Table.
The award recognizes a person or organization that has demonstrated outstanding leadership to improve the health of the MetroWest region. It is named in memory of Deborah Blumer, the late state representative and founding chair of the foundation's board of trustees.
161 Worcester Rd, Ste. 202
Framingham, MA 01701
Phone: (508) 879-7625
Fax: (508) 879-7628
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